Remember that time I made a stovetop-charred eggplant dip (aka baba ganoush)? Really? You don’t remember that? Because that was like a week or two ago. You really ought to have your memory checked.
Anyhoo, I realize that many of you may have been intimidated by the idea of stovetop charring. “Put an eggplant on my stovetop?” said an old granny who reads my blog. “Not in my house!” Here, granny, is a smart alternative.
This technique is a riff on the one in the beautiful new Franny’s cookbook. The big breakthrough from those pages is that you can blend the eggplants, skin and all, after you broil them; only you have to use skinny Japanese eggplants like the ones you see here.
Cut their tops off, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Into the broiler they go.
It’s actually way more relaxing to do this in the broiler than on a stovetop. Just leave them in there for a while and every so often check. As they start to wilt and wrinkle on the top, use tongs to flip the eggplants over. Keep going. Your goal is to get them cooked all the way through and slightly charred (though not really black) on the exterior. You’ll know when they’re done. See?
Then straight into the food processor they go.
At this point, you can do what the Franny’s folks have you do–saute a few chopped cloves of garlic in olive oil–and add it, olive oil and all, to the mix:
And blend that up with a pinch of salt, a little more olive oil and lemon juice. That produces a light and airy eggplant dip.
Me? I wanted a little more substance, so I referred back to the recipe from that first post which comes from my cookbook. Essentially, that means I just added two more ingredients: tahini and honey.
Whir that up, taste and adjust for salt, lemon juice, tahini, etc.
And there you go. Now that’s an eggplant dip! And so much easier than the charred stovetop version.
So get yourself some skinny eggplants, turn on your broiler and get busy. It’s healthy too.